Market Overview

Trump, Pelosi, Schumer Bicker In Meeting About Wall Funding, Government Shutdown

Trump, Pelosi, Schumer Bicker In Meeting About Wall Funding, Government Shutdown

The U.S. stock markets took a hit Tuesday along with Americans' hope for bipartisanship in Washington after a meeting about a potential holiday season government shutdown between President Donald Trump, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer devolved into a heated argument on live TV.

Trump, Pelosi and Schumer appeared to make little progress in a discussion about government funding, particularly funding for Trump’s proposed border wall with Mexico.

What You Need To Know

If Congress can't pass a funding bill by Dec. 21, a partial government shutdown will be triggered the week before Christmas.

Trump has said he will not support any funding bill that does not prioritize “border security,” specifically designating $5 billion in spending toward the construction of the wall.

Pelosi and Schumer reportedly had planned to make a deal with Trump to pass appropriations bills for six government agencies that would keep the government operating in the near-term, including a Department of Homeland Security budget that would maintain current levels of spending for the next year.

The argument played out on live TV, rattling investors and leading Americans to wonder if anything will get done in Washington once Democrats take control of the House in January.

What They Said

Trump seemed to draw a line in the sand when it comes to his wall, saying “you can’t have border security without the wall.” Pelosi said that claim is “not true” and asked for evidence for Trump’s claim.

Ultimately, Trump said he would take the blame for a government shutdown rather than approve a spending plan that doesn’t include funding for the wall.

“If we don’t get what we want, one way or the other, whether it’s through you, through military, through anything you want to call, I will shut down the government,” Trump said. “I am proud to shut down the government for border security, Chuck."

In a joint post-meeting statement, Schumer and Pelosi conceded the ball is in Trump’s court.

“We gave the president two options that would keep the government open. It’s his choice to accept one of those options or shut down the government,” the statement said.

What’s Next

The Dow dropped more than 200 points as the drama unfolded live on TV. Investors will be keeping an eye on Washington in the next 10 days to see if any progress can be made on a budget or if Trump will follow through on his threat for a government shutdown starting on Dec. 21.

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Photo credit: CSPAN


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